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Sent to Wem

July 4, 2012
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Wow!  What a fabulous weekend.  Aunty Sarah, plus Zoe as a surprise!!!  Did wonder why Sarah couldn’t find someone to look after the cats for 2 nights, but she lied admirably to my face.  Was a little perplexed when wonderful husband suggested that i didn’t cut the fish up and cook half for the kids, claiming that he needed seconds if not thirds (too believable).  Wondered why he’d put all the spare towels out on Sarah’s bed.  But just took all in my stride.  Brilliant.  The little tinkers.

Talking of tinkers…have got some right local gossip for you.  In Welsh, you’re not sent to Coventry, you’re sent to Wem.  Now, we’ve yet to make it to this village – serviced by one of those trains that you only get right out here in proper country, one that you have to hail to stop at the station, or tell the driver that you want to get off.  But, the reason that you’re sent there is that it’s apparently the centre of inbreeding hereabouts.  Now, excuse my city-innocence, but i had thought that kind of thing was something of the past.  Sepia-d images of Appalachian natives etc.  However, it turns out not to be the case.  Is right here on my doorstep.

Every morning a i take the bairns to nursery, we swim upstream against the flow of kids going in the opposite direction to school (he he, next year we swim with them…), and i often pass the same people.  Being the simpleton that i am, i smile at most of them, and am now on cheery ‘hello’ terms with quite a few (oh, yes, love the country friendliness).  Now, there’s one particular family that has often caught my eye, being as they are incredibly singular looking.  The first thing that i noticed was the daughter’s unbelievable eyes – one startling blue, the other brown.  Having stared too much, the polite thing is to be overly smiley to the mother, who in of herself is a rather interesting specimen.  Sporting the wonderful look of 3 inch grey roots, with a very odd colour brown/red dye for the rest of her hair.  I know that i should not be casting aspersions on other people’s hair, considering mine’s not been coloured for a few years now (who knew i wasn’t actually, anymore, deep down, a natural blonde…still claiming mouse is a shade of blonde though….), but then there’s her nose.  Which a few of her kids have too.  And several other members of her family by all accounts.  Less of a nose, more of a weird flat space where the nose should be and then a little snout.  And so i smile, but not as naturally as i might want to.  And then i feel guilty for being judgemental, and deeply sorry for their lot.

And then, at the first school induction that wee man had (more on that later, the final one’s next week…), the other mum’s were gossiping.  Their kids are in the other class, and they both have older kids already in the school.  And they weren’t happy.  They had Lock children in all of their kids’ classes.  And we’ve got a ‘cousin’ in wee man’s class.  The Locks apparently are a famous family round these parts.  Come from Wem.  And there has been for at least 4 generations now a very loose definition within the Lock family of ‘generation’.  Hideousness.  Brothers being Uncles, Fathers Brothers etc etc you get the picture.  And the poor beautiful girl with the one blue eye and the one brown eye?  Right in the middle of it all.  Some of the mother’s children are fathered by her father.  Unknown, but suspected, who the other children are by.  What an awful tragedy.  Really, quite shocking, i think.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. July 4, 2012 7:17 pm

    Ah, nothing like a little diversity to keep things interesting. What are the other mother’s afraid of – that incest is catching? Best and only thing is to treat the Locks like everyone else and not prejudice their classmates against them – poor mites. xxx

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